South African entrepreneurs talk about Forbes Africa 30 list

During its annual developer conference, global giant Facebook featured numerous African inventers. They were among those who created new products and features for the online social media platform.

The F8 Conference, as it is known, took place over two days in April in San Francisco. A range of new products, tools and interactive demos were featured, and a host of speakers attended to assist developers build, grow and monetise their apps.

“We believe that local entrepreneurs and developers will be the ones to meet the needs of their immediate community, and we are working with developers to know how we can support them in doing so,” said Emeka Afigbo, a manager at Facebook.

“We are listening to our developer partners in Africa, and the strong showing for F8 is a reflection of our commitment to doing more with our partners across the continent to help them build products and businesses.”

See the conference highlights:

The following apps, created by African developers, were launched at the conference:

  • Afrinolly (Entertainment, Nigeria)
  • Gumtree South Africa (Classifieds, South Africa)
  • Vzikoko (Entertainment, Nigeria)
  • Jobberman (Jobs, Nigeria/Ghana)
  • The Net (Entertainment, Nigeria)
  • My Music (Media, Nigeria)

Smaller F8 gatherings were also hosted in Nairobi, Lagos, Cape Town and Morocco, where participants watched the sessions as they took place in San Francisco.

Three young Malawians won a developer challenge. Walter Moyo, Thandie Magasa and Daniel Mvalo created Maternitech, an app that provides an educational
platform to reduce the pregnancy rate in girls under the age of 18.

Watch this interview with the three Malawian developers:

The Talk to Me app was created by 10-year-old Panashe Jere, who learned to code at a Coding for Kids session at the Malawi hub. “This app converts input text into voice so children always have someone to talk to,” said Facebook.

Users on the platform

As of June 2014, reported Facebook, there were 100 million people arriving on the platform every month across the African continent, with over 80% on mobile.

Facebook users in AfricaCompared to the US and Europe, there are a billion more people in Africa using Facebook on mobile devices. (Image: Facebook for Business)

South reporter